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China, Dalai Lama at Odds as Tibet Anniversary Approaches

Posted by: Bruce Einhorn on February 25, 2009

On March 10, 1959, Tibetans began an uprising against Chinese rule. A few days later, the Dalai Lama left Lhasa and went into exile in India. He has never returned. With the 50th anniversary of the failed revolt approaching, the Dalai Lama is warning his supporters about “an unprecedented and unimaginable forceful crackdown” in Tibet. Last March, there were bloody protests in Tibet; in a statement posted on the official website of his government in exile to mark the Tibetan New Year, the Dalai Lama says “the occasion of this New Year is certainly not a period when we can have the usual celebrations and gaiety.” While there were some signs last year that the Chinese government and the Dalai Lama were making some progress in thawing ties, his New Year’s statement shows relations are again in the deep freeze. According to the Dalai Lama, China’s intention is “to subject the Tibetan people to such a level of cruelty and harassment that they will not be able tolerate and thus be forced to remonstrate.” To avoid further bloodshed, the Dalai Lama’s statement adds, “I would like to make a strong appeal to the Tibetan people to exercise patience and not to give in to these provocations.” For its part, the Chinese government has said it will “firmly crush the savage aggression of the Dalai clique,” according to the AFP.

The Western business community no doubt is hoping Tibetans heed the Dalai Lama’s call. Last year’s demonstrations in Tibet, followed soon after by pro-Tibet protests in London, Paris and other Western cities, prompted a strong backlash inside China against companies that allegedly were anti-China or based in countries that had shown support for the Dalai Lama. See, for example, this BusinessWeek story by my colleague Dexter Roberts about the struggles that French retailer Carrefour had in China after French politicians spoke critically of Beijing’s Tibet policies.

You can bet President Obama and Secretary of State Clinton are hoping for a quiet anniversary, too. Hillary earned condemnation from pro-Tibet activists during her Asia trip last week when she indicated Tibet wasn’t even close to the top of her agenda during talks with China’s leaders. As AFP reported the day before Clinton sat down for talks in Beijing, “Paying her first visit to Asia as the top US diplomat, Clinton said the United States would continue to press China on long-standing US concerns over human rights such as its rule over Tibet. ‘But our pressing on those issues can’t interfere on the global economic crisis, the global climate change crisis and the security crisis,’ Clinton told reporters in Seoul just before leaving for Beijing.” Last year, when the world was focusing on the Beijing Olympics and the global economy still seemed strong, governments might have been willing to press China on the Tibetan issue. That’s not going to happen now, not with so many countries looking to Beijing to help get the world out of its economic mess. The Dalai Lama must realize this, and his call for quiet therefore is, among other things, good politics.

Reader Comments


February 25, 2009 8:36 PM

Dalai Lama is the biggest or one of the biggest liars in the world, a true human being with a jackal's heart.


February 25, 2009 11:43 PM

We as Tibetans vow to uphold Dalai peace uprising message and restore Serfdom in Tibet and China.


February 26, 2009 1:31 AM

In case you are wondering, the first two comments originated in the chinese embassy. For this article is not viewable in China. Chinese are very afraid of losing face. The truth is that they invaded and illegally annexed Tibet in 1949-51, and persist in its brutal occupation. Now they want to re-write history. For its greed and a face of deception, China continues to bring suffering to the world.


February 26, 2009 3:50 AM

To: Forheaven

I think you really dislike history coz you have not read any history about Tibet before you jump to conclusions.

What is the actual situation in Tibet? I think you never know and you are unwilling to know.


February 26, 2009 4:52 AM

the US has regarded China as an enemy since the founding of PRC,and now still regarded as a potential enemy.
As a chinese living in China,we fully understand why american will do whatever it takes to harm China.


February 26, 2009 5:14 AM

Dalai Lama is a false Dalai and is the devil within. Please check at


February 26, 2009 5:16 AM

Forheaven, you are either a fool or a liar. Stop pretending you know anything about Tibet. Tibet has been a part of China at least since the 1700s and even the Dalai Lama recognize this. Even the US has recognized China's soverignty over Tibet long before the communist revolution in 1949. It is the Western liars and hegmonists who have been rewriting history and try to break China up. Watch this WWII film produced by the US government:

Big Menteur

February 26, 2009 5:41 AM

Protest against the Dalai Lama in Nantes - Day Three
Menteur (Liar)

Dalai Lama is a false Lama who is born to a Muslim family. As the Dalai Lama arrived at the Zenith in Nantes today he was greeted by impassioned cries of “Menteur! Menteur! Menteur!” (“Liar! Liar! Liar!”) The chanting grew stronger, resounding throughout the large entertainment park, as the Dalai Lama’s convoy drove past the assembly of Shugden practitioners.


February 26, 2009 6:20 AM

Forheaven, the truth is you are either a fool or a liar. Stop pretending you know anything about Tibet! Tibet has become a part of China at least since the 1700s and even the Dalai Lama acknowledge this. Even the US has long recognized China's soverignty over Tibet long before the communist revolution in 1949. It is the Western liars and hegmonists who have been rewriting history during the Cold War and try to break China up. Watch this WWII film produced by the US government in the early 1940s:


February 26, 2009 8:50 AM

Imagine a young boy from Muslim family from Qinghai region in China was falsely installed by the Regent of Tibet, Reting Lama as the fourteenth Dalai Lama. Not only the Dalai Lama is false, he now presecute the teaching of Dorje Shugden who was revered by all his predecessors, calling it a evil spirit.


February 26, 2009 1:07 PM

Tibet Autonomous Region in Southwestern CHINA is a beautiful place I once visited. A MUST see for every one of the 1.4 billion CHINESE around the globe. Ethnic Tibetans in CHINA, as one of 56 ethnic groups in this enormous and fabulous country, are allowed to freely practice their form of Buddhism and that is a wonderful thing. NO non-CHINESE with ulterior motives will EVER succeed to fabricate stories about CHINA. We, 1.4 billion CHINESE around the globe and our strategic partners, will see to it that the falsities by a handful of western european and american anarchists will not be permitted to spread around.


February 26, 2009 1:37 PM

forheaven: how much money you get monthly from CIA? working for dalai lama does not mean you can put anything you like without being responsible for it. I suggust you read the history first especially the part how dalai lama slaved local poor ppl before he went to India. Search youtube, you will get plenty of them.


February 26, 2009 1:56 PM

forheaven, can you tell where my IP is from? You're so pathetic to judge people' views by judging where they're from.

The fact that Dalai is a liar is not something new. He can talk fancy things, but I think we should judge people from what they act, not what spill from their lips.


February 26, 2009 9:08 PM

Lamaism, old Tibet, Dalai were truely epitome of the darkest side of human society. CIA and now the western countries unwavering support of Dalai Lama says only one thing, they are as barbaric as those who burnt and looted Yuan Ming Yuan.


February 26, 2009 9:22 PM

Last year's riots was the defining moment you could tell what really western media are. They will lie, they will fabricate, they will love to see China splinter.

If you have read most AP or AFP stories yesterday about the looted bronze relics auctioned at Christie by YSL. You will hardly find any term of "loot", "sacked" or "burnt", most likely the readers will see "disappeared". Is it funny?

Zheng Yuan

February 27, 2009 12:45 AM

Tibet was,is and will always being parts of China. we the Chinese will go to war for that.


February 27, 2009 12:57 AM

Western powers used the Tibetan exiles as a political pawn that they can play against China from time to time. As China continues to strengthen, Tibet is no longer an effective pawn. It is time for the western powers to do the real humane thing to the Tibetan exiles: Tell them they have been nothing but a PAWN all there years and go get a real job, because they are going to be dumped soon, and their financial support from the west will be cut off.


February 27, 2009 3:20 AM

The US has long recognized Tibet as a part of China even before 1949, but reneged on this only after the communist revolution. It then tried to break up China by re-writing history and sponsoring insurgency in Tibet. I am truly amazed by the power of American propaganda in distoring truth, fabricating history and brainwashing people into believing that China controlled Tibet only since 1950s.


February 27, 2009 3:33 AM

i really admire The Dalai Lama;
he's the only C.I.A. operative to ever win a noble prize


February 27, 2009 4:08 AM

my advice to BW,report China from different angles, instead of lingering on those boring issues.China is the largest developing country with big market share,as a business mangazine,should give your readers more usful information about CHINA during the economic crisis.


February 27, 2009 8:23 AM

I am a Chinese who have lived in China for almost 30 years.I do consider that If there were anything too abundant in China,it would be liar.The Chinese government have even introduced an institution called Cyber-Commentor,or vividly named as "Wu Mao"(It means fifty cents RMB). The cyber-commentors monitor the major Chinese BBS‘,defend the goverment's or the Party's policies and political propaganda and spread rumor and hatred against democracy and West.They are blind to the illness and evil brought by current regime.Unfortunately, I have just seen them here,too.It is the shame on China.


February 27, 2009 8:41 AM

I hope you Westerners can understand that the real condtions are quite different from what you have seen.As I know, most Chinese people have no any bad feeling about you and they will be glad to be your friends. Furthermore,depiste some of them are cheated or confused by lies,Chinese people will be grateful of your care for their welfare,and support to their rights.
As you know ,most Chinese,including me, consider Tibet an unseperatable part of China.But I do think that we must fully respect the traditions ,culture and religion there.


February 27, 2009 3:41 PM

China has subjected Tibet to brutal occupation since 1949. There are no 2 views about that. It is part of a strange Han Chinese whim that any piece of land that is even vaguely populated by humans with the 'hanren' looks historically belongs to China.PRC faces a massive separatist movement in Xinjiang too. I think it is the only nation which has serious 'boundary issues' with every single neighbor of its. Manipulation and twisted interpretation of history and cartographic invasion are a cohesive part of the state policy. The latest jig in its repertoire is the $300 million diplomatic switch where it throws in $300 million dirty dollars into poor names (Costa Rica and Macedonia) in exchange for breaking off diplomatic ties with Taiwan.History has shown that such arrogant regimes rarely go unpunished and I foresee China being taught a lesson too.

from canton

March 2, 2009 7:07 AM

when we chinese want to talk about the authorite of tibet ,we are dropped into their traps.. Tibet was, is, ans will be our terriority. that's history,not a debate! We can talk about the authorite of N-AMERICA, NEW MEXICO,hawaii...who should be their true master..

Buddha Nepal

March 11, 2009 2:51 AM

Dalie chose to leave Tibet, China. One China for all Tibetan Chinese people.


March 11, 2009 3:28 AM

How come Dalai Lama, souds blind fold after all. You aren't find any slave since Dalai left to India.


March 28, 2009 10:55 AM

Hope peace lovers will come to invest more money in Tibet instead of making trouble. They can go there and see with their eyes. Pelosi is a willful woman who refuses to see the fact.An unworthy speaker!a silly pig!

Tonton Makoute

May 27, 2009 1:07 AM

1°) Notice that the Dalaï Lama never had a word of compassion or the like for the unfortunate Amerindian Peoples and Nations;

2°) He never pressed the American democracy to give back the unfortunate Amerindian Peoples and Nations their sovereign rights and rights of ownership over the whole present day 'US' territory.

Tonton Makoute

August 21, 2009 8:53 AM

Notice that a number of losers on the world stage and in History, like Tchiang Kai-shek and his followers, chose to flee from the country following their defeat. So did the dalaï lama and his followers. Those runaways chose to rely on foreign powers to regain some form of legitimacy, as if those foreign powers's interest was to safeguard China's interests !

Tonton Makoute

December 21, 2009 1:40 AM

If Tibet was an independent country ever since the dawn of History, then why did Britain instigated the Simla conference, in 1913-14, where it treated Tibet and China on an equal footing ? This move was aiming at getting China to renounce its rights of sovereignty over Tibet and integrate it into its quarantine line made up of a number of Himalayan kingdoms and states to protect its Indian Empire.

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